Wednesday, September 18, 2013
ORNL in the News

UT Network Infrastructure to Upgrade to 100G

(Tennessee Today) The UT–Oak Ridge National Laboratory Joint Institute for Computational Sciences—and UT’s Office of Information Technology—have announced final plans to upgrade the bandwidth of UT’s wide area network for research and education to 100 gigabit per second (100G) capability by July 2014...9/17

Why ramping up power at Spallation Neutron Source is good news

(Knoxville News Sentinel) The Spallation Neutron Source, which attracts science researchers from around the globe, last week ramped up the power of its proton beam to 1.2 megawatts. That was the highest beam power since the SNS began operations back in April 2006, according to information provided by Oak Ridge National Laboratory...9/18

The mercury puzzle

(Knoxville News Sentinel) Early this year, the mercury research team at Oak Ridge National Laboratory came out with a big announcement (published in Science), identifying two genes in microorganisms that are responsible for the environmental process that converts some forms of mercury into the most toxic form — methylmercury...9/17

ORNL and UT researchers work to protect people from deadly chemical gases

(WATE-TV) Is there a way to protect people from deadly chemical agents like those recently used in Syria? Local researchers are working on finding answers. Scientists at the Oak Ridge National Lab and the University of Tennessee are taking a close look at a special enzyme through the use of neutrons combined with high performance computing...9/17

DOE

K-25 is coming down

(Knoxville News Sentinel) ...Demolition of K-25, which was the world’s largest building under one roof when it was constructed during World War II, began in December 2008 under the guidance of Bechtel Jacobs Co...9/17

An Update on Fisker Automotive and the Energy Department’s Loan Portfolio

(Energy.gov) The continued success of America’s auto industry depends on innovation and next-generation technologies that consumers all over the world increasingly demand -- and the Energy Department is playing an important role in this global competition...9/17

National

Obama to ask business leaders to push Congress to raise debt limit

(Reuters) President Barack Obama will appeal to business leaders on Wednesday to urge Congress to approve an increase in the U.S. debt limit and avoid a default that is possible as early as mid-October...9/18

State & Regional

TVA forms advisory energy panels

(Times Free Press) The Tennessee Valley Authority is forming two new advisory boards this fall to give advice and counsel about the changing power market ahead...9/17

 

energy & science policy

Germany hits science high

(Nature) A physicist by training, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has a proven affinity for science. Thanks to generous government funding, German research has thrived since she first came to power eight years ago...9/18

Sequester Cuts May Have Driven NIH Grant Success Rates Down to 14% in 2013

(Science Magazine) The automatic spending cuts and other reductions to the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH’s) budget this year have caused slightly less damage than expected, NIH Director Francis Collins said yesterday. Preliminary data show that about 50 more grants were funded than projected...9/13

science & technology

Dancing With Black Widow Spiders

(NY Times) ...The black widow’s graceful form and red hourglass marking have made it America’s most recognizable spider. The Eastern species, Latrodectus mactans, is common from Florida to New York and as far west as Texas...9/16

Can Flow Batteries Replace Diesel Generators?

(Scientific American) ...Multiple battery technologies are being experimented with right now, including lithium and cadmium flow batteries, but Vancouver, British Columbia-based American Vanadium thinks vanadium flow batteries could have several distinct advantages, including durability and scalability...9/17

Making industrial plasma safer

(PhysOrg) EPFL scientists have uncovered the physics behind the formation of plasmoids – funnel-like, high-energy plasmas that can severely damage industrial plasma reactors, causing millions in repairs and lost productivity in plasma technologies like those used to make display screens and even food containers....9/18

Other Stories

Boeing's stretched 787-9 Dreamliner makes first flight

(Reuters) A longer version of Boeing Co's Dreamliner made its first flight on Tuesday, passing a key milestone for a plane that should be more profitable both for Boeing to sell and for its customers to operate than the current production model...9/17